Kerim "Krimh" Lechner is one of today's most impressive metal musicians. While most know him for his incredible drum covers on his YouTube channel and playing with Decapitated for a while and is also a self-taught guitarist and bassist. Guest writer Monish Shringi had a quick chat with Krimh, where they talked about Krimh's new album Krimhera, playing with Decapitated and Behemoth, young artists using crowdfunding to finance their projects, and more. 

How does it feel to come from posting covers on Youtube and drumming for Thorns of Ivy all the way to being involved with mammoth bands like Decapitated and Behemoth?

Well it feels quite weird if I look back but on the other hand, I was working very hard to be at this point. With a bit talent, very hard work and big luck you can reach everything! I am very happy how my life looks like. Of course it has many ups and downs but so far the positive memories and moments are more. I think its important to listen to yourself, take sometimes risks and give it a chance. It can go bad but also well.

Both your solo albums have been crowd-funded. What’s your take on crowdfunding? Do you see it as a new way bands will be funding your projects in the future?

For me being an instrumental solo artist, who is playing metal music, its actually the only smart way to do. My music is very different compared to mainstream metal. There are no vocals, I mix a lot of styles and I never played any live shows with this project. I more or less depend on my online fans. In such situation, crowd-funding is a great tool to get financial support but also have a straight connection with your fans. There is nobody in between and I think that's why many people actually like to support their artists that way. Plus they become somehow “part” of the album.

Hard to say if its the future. I don’t think its possible to be a big successful band without having a record label. I guess everyone knows that record companies have many financial problems nowadays with all the illegal music downloading. But still in my opinion it doesn't work only with crowd-funding to be as big as In Flames, Dimmu Borgir, Behemoth...
Crowd-funding is perfect for young artists like I am, to get their music and art out there!

What do you think separates Krimhera from your previous release? What would fans expect to be different this time around?

There are differences of course but its still “KRIMH”. Witch means I have my style of writing music and I like to combine heavy and beautiful melodic parts. So thats what people can expect but I would say in general its way heavier than “Explore”. Riffs are darker and stronger witch gives it this “punch in the face” effect. Plus I spend quite some time to write interesting drum beats that work with microphones. Let me explain that: in metal music, drums are usually either half or even fully replaced with perfect sample hits. I don’t like that because everyone uses the same samples and it starts to sound flat and boring. So my goal was to make it the old school way. Spend time finding good microphones and try to play as good as possible. If you write your drum beats with triggers on the kick and than want to go and record everything natural, it eventually might not work. On “Krimhera” there are fast blast beats and double bass parts but I really pay attention to how it sounds in the end mix. We only used EQs, compressors and a bit of room sound for the drums. If a double bass part is too long/fast and it doesn't sound strong played, I am changing it. But let me tell you I am very happy with the outcome and I think people will like it. At least I hope so.
What else is new? Of course we want to get a better sound out of everything but also “Krimhera”  has some specials witch I don’t want to tell right now. You will hear it!

What are some of the benefits of being a solo artist? Do you find it best working on your own?

Solo artist = 100% own ideas and creativity. I don't think there is much more to say about benefits because thats the most important in my opinion. It can get a bit annoying if you have to record all instruments on your own. Recording drums is the easiest for me, obviously. But if it comes to guitars I always feel like dying because it takes sooo long. I am a perfectionist and I have a certain idea in my head. Witch means “it has to sound like that” and I am trying as long as it takes. Till exhaustion! The problems is that I am actually not practicing guitar. I don’t have the time for that and it doesn't give me much pleasure like playing drums. If it comes to recording guitar, I totally suck! Well maybe I should finally learn from my mistakes and start to practice more guitar.  

Are you considering setting up a live band to promote Krimhera on the road?

I am thinking about this. I would have more than enough material to play a live show. I am just not sure where to search for musicians because I live in Poland and Austria. There are a couple of questions signs still in the room but lets see what 2015 brings for my solo project.

You've played for two of the biggest metal bands Poland has to offer: Behemoth and Decapitated How was your overall experience? While you only recorded with Decapitated, you played live shows with both. What were some differences that you experienced working with the two bands?

I can tell you, I learned so much with both bands even if they are different. I wouldn't be the same drummer if I haven't played with Decapitated and Behemoth. Vogg told me a lot what to change and how to do it better. During the time my playing develop and changed 180 degrees. With Behemoth it was the same. They taught me how the “visual” effect of a live show can change the overall view. With all the fire, outfits and makes a big impression for the audience. In Decapitated we could wear whatever we wanted but it was important to play well. That was somehow our only way to get peoples attention. I don't want to say the guys from Behemoth are bad musicians. Not at all! Their music is quite hard and complicated but they have a total different approach if it comes to live shows.
Another difference would be that we played way bigger shows with Behemoth. They are the biggest polish Metal-band right now and there is some sort of pressure in the air. I mean, I am probably the only one who pressures myself but its because I know what festivals they play and how big name Behemoth has. It was a great experience to play in front of 20 000 people and feel the fire on stage. It was magical and I will never forget that. And thats the cool thing because no one can take away your memories!

Since you’ve toured with both bands, tell us about some of your favorite (and worst) moments of touring so far in your music career.

People that don’t have a lot to do with music think, every musician is a rockstar with a rockstar attitude and rockstar life. Well, let me tell you, maybe 20% of this is correct! I experienced both sides. Fancy 5 stars hotel in Japan, single room, good payed shows, own crew, but also sleeping with 7 people in a van in the middle of nowhere, no cash after 1 month tour, no shower, bad or no food and the list goes on and on.
Both is part of the business and both have something. I like it! Thats how it looks like and I am fine with both sides. I said before there are more positive memories and I want to keep it like that. One of my highlights and best moments ever was the Asian tour with Behemoth. There was too much cool stuff to explain everything in one interview but let me tell you this: paragliding in Himalaya, driving on an active volcano with an old US army Jeep, 5 star hotel single rooms, see thousand years old temples, cultures and religions,....

What have you been listening to in your spare time these days? (Both metal and non-metal)

I listen almost no metal in my spare time. Right now I listen a lot to Karnivool, Bohren & Der Club Of Gore, The Intersphere, If these trees could talk, Sia...

Apart from music, what are some of your other interests?

My girlfriend, family and friends, sports, good food and my fat cat! :)

What advice would you give to a young drummer?

Like Tim Yeung once said:
Practice, Passion and Patience! I think that tells it all. And most important: music is not a competition. Its about having fun and love what you are doing no matter what other people say or think. Do your thing but do it with 100%!

What are your future plans? Are you going to spend more time on your solo material, or are you considering being involved full-time with bands again?

I am doing a lot of things right now. My solo project, session jobs in the studio, play live with bands and giving drum lessons. Of course I am open to play full- time in a bigger band but its easy to say and not so easy to find one. I am a positive thinker and I keep playing music no matter what happens. “Still stand means death” so I keep pushing forward with my own solo project or session work or as a full time member in a new band.

Any final words for’s readers?

I hope I wasn't talking too much boring bullshit for you guys. :) (Ed note: No, Kerim. You certainly weren't!) 

Stay connected with Krimh

Check out Krimh's playthrough of "Es Regnet Staub", one of our favorite tracks of Krimhera!

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